PETER PAN LONDON-BOUND
Atlanta Ballet opens the new year with performances of its Peter Pan at London's Royal Festival Hall through January 8. The company ended the millennium performing on two continents as its final performances of The Nutcracker in Atlanta overlapped the December 21 London opening. "Performing two full-length ballets on opposite ends of the Atlantic is a testament to how much Atlanta Ballet has grown over the years," says artistic director John McFall.
BUSTAMANTE LEAVES TEATRO COLON
Ricardo Bustamante resigned as Director of the Ballet Estable of Buenos Aires' Teatro Colon October 6, according to the Argentine daily La Nacion. The newspaper cited the difficulty of Bustamante's working conditions, including labor conflicts. Also tendering her resignation was Assistant Director Cristina Delmagro, who was catapulted to stardom in the 1970s when Pierre Lacotte bypassed all the Colon's senior ballerinas to pluck young Delmagro from the corps de ballet and cast her as the lead in his La Sylphide.
Bustamante's resignation occurred three days after a press conference announcing the premiere of Le Corsaire, during which dancers confronted Colon Director General Luis Osejevich, demanding the rescheduling of two canceled performances of the ballet. "Sources close to the ballet," said the article, "indicated that the cancelation of those two performances was the straw that broke the camel's back."
In a subsequent interview reported in La Nacion, Bustamante, a former ABT principal, seemed to confirm this while expressing satisfaction with the company's artistic response to his direction. But, he said, "I had no cooperation from the city government nor from the theater ... there was no commitment or political support from the authorities. As for Osejevich, it has been very difficult to work with him. On several occasions, without consulting me, he changed dates and casting."
Bustamante also complained of a retirement policy that lets dancers work until sixty-three. La Nacion reported Osejevich's agreement with some of Bustamante's complaints. "There are problems with the regime, and sometimes the situation is untenable," said Osejevich, who expects to select a new director in January.
CAREER TRANSITIONS FOR DANCERS HOSTS GALA
Dancers are always in transition: from foot to foot, student to professional, novice to mature artist. The time always comes, however, when the dancer steps off the stage for the last time and begins something new. That's where Career Transitions for Dancers comes in. Founded in 1985, CTFD has helped more than 1,000 dancers look squarely at their career options and take what the organization refers to as "the next step" past performing.
CTFD hosted a glittery gala on October 25 in New York City, which included a performance at the Kaye Playhouse. Highlights included Strings, a dazzlingly cool solo for Rasta Thomas by Ann Made DeAngelo. Diana and Acteon was recharged by the verve and virtuosity of Jennifer Gelfand and Jose Manuel Carreno. Robert La Fosse transformed Helene Alexopoulos into an exuberant lindy hopper in his rollicking "Rockin' in Rhythm" finale from Duke!
Modern dance choreographer David Parsons premiered a slim but affecting piece d'occasion with the luminous American Ballet Theatre principal Susan Jaffe. The duet, A Clear Night, was created as a tribute to philanthropist Theodore Newhouse, whose interest in dance spanned a long and full life. "I'd never worked with David before," remarks Jaffe, "Great! I thought, I'm going to be mod-ren." But Parsons wanted to make a transition of his own, however briefly. "He put me on pointe and did lifts he's never done before," laughs Jaffe. Reflecting on the fragility and challenges of a dancer's career, she adds, "you have to have a philosophy. The more you are really yourself on a deep level, the more you contribute as a human being." For more information on CTFD, call (212) 581-7043 or (213) 549-6660.
OPPOSITES ATTRACT: GOLDHUBER AND LATSKY AT THE JOYCE
Heidi Latsky and Lawrence Goldhuber are an odd couple onstage with his sumo-wrestler build and her petite dancer's physique. Appearing in the Altogether Different festival at the Joyce Theater this January [See Presstime News, page 40], these collaborators' divergent views give them an edge on- and offstage.
Latsky is a dancer's dancer. Lithe, agile, with a ferocity that amplifies her small stature, she is fascinated by the language of movement. Goldhuber cheerfully concedes his theatrical bent, claiming "context gives our work content more than the movement itself." Latsky vehemently disagrees. "Movement is the context!" she says. Goldhuber states his goal for their Joyce season is "to entertain." Latsky counters, "That sounds so commercial. I want to touch people, rather than make them think." And so it goes. Out of this friction comes a refreshing compromise that merges sophisticated dancing, physical comedy and theatrical know-how.
Goldhuber & Latsky will premiere their work, I Hate Modern Dance at the Joyce. This five-part piece "is a sort of greatest hits" says Goldhuber, which combines moments from previous concerts with new material. Each word of the title becomes a segment of the dance. The "Modem" section is a new film made by Gretchen Bender. The "Dance" section is a whirl of ballroom, disco, and competition references danced to a new score by Vernon Reid. Life-size puppets made in the dancers' images also participate stoically. "I dance with Larry and with myself," says Latsky. "And I throw him over my head!" she adds, clearly relishing the role reversal.
ALLEGRA KENT CAUGHT ON VIDEO
Allegra Kent was videotaped teaching and coaching two Balanchine ballets on October 17 in New York City as part of the Balanchine Foundation's video archives. Kent worked with NYCB dancers Janie Taylor, Peter Boal, and Albert Evans on La Sonnambula and Bugaku. Balanchine created Bugaku on Kent and Edward Villella in 1963 and Kent danced the role of the Sleepwalker when the work was revived in 1960. The foundation's video archives are housed at the dance collection of the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.
MUNISTERI BACK FOR MORE
Choreographer Ben Munisteri, whose 11 p.m. shows of Late Night Sugar Flight were sellouts at Manhattan's P.S. 122 in 1997, returns to the East Village theater for a two-week season, January 27 to February 6. The program, titled "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough" includes three world premieres and the 1998 Danspace Project commission Smash Through To Sunlight. The three new works, I am a present from God to You, set to different music each night; the group work F*** My Time Index; and Lust Is a Pig, Wallowing and Groveling in Mud and Filth, set to Strauss's Der Rosenkavalier are scheduled to be danced by Lisa Wheeler, Tricia Brouk, Chris McMillan, and Bradley R. Lundberg.
PEOPLE AND COMPANIES IN THE NEWS
The 1999 Princess Grace Awards were presented in a ceremony on October 26 in New York City. American Ballet Theatre principal Ethan Stiefel was given the Statue Award in dance by His Serene Highness Prince Albert of Monaco. The Nicholas Brothers and Helene Alexopoulos presented dance awards to Angela Snow, Randy Herrera, Ari Mayzick, Lauren Porter, Michele Wiles, and Doin Wilson ... Former Joffrey dancer Valerie Madonia has been hired as artistic director of Telluride Society for the Performing Arts. She will oversee the creation of a new dance academy for TSPA and will develop year-round education and performance programs ... Remy Charlip, Joanna Haigood, Jacques Heim, Alonzo King, Rudy Perez, Wendy Rogers, David Rousseve, and Linda Sohl-Donnell have received 1999 Irvine Fellowships in Dance ... Cincinnati dancer/choreographer Jefferson James is the recipient of the 1999 Ohio Dance Award for her pioneering work as founder and artistic director of Contemporary Dance Theater ... Daniel Simmons has been named director of the School of Cincinnati Ballet ... Arts advocate and former dancer Nancy Zeckendorf has been named in The New Mexican newspaper among those who made a difference in the state. After spearheading the rebuilding of the Santa Fe Opera's facilities, the Santa Fe resident is now leading the campaign to renovate and restore a historic movie theater into the Lensic Performing Arts Center ... Video artist Douglas Rosenberg has been awarded the Director's Prize by the sixth annual Jewish Video Competition for his video dance piece with Anna Halprin, My Grandfather Dances.
SYDNEY DANCE COMPANY TO PERFORM NEW WORK DURING OLYMPIC ARTS FESTIVAL
Sydney's Olympic Games Committee has given Graeme Murphy, longtime director of Sydney Dance Company, the opportunity to represent Australian dance in a new full-length piece during the final Sydney Olympics Arts Festival Harbour of Life. The inspiration for Murphy's new work, his twenty-fifth full-length piece to date, derives from the mythology of ancient Greeks and will be titled Mythologia. Murphy has commissioned well-known Australian composer Carl Vine to create a new score for the work. Performing August 19 to 26 in Sydney's Capitol Theatre, the company will be part of one of the highest profile arts festivals in Sydney's history.
Murphy, a former member of the Australian Ballet Company and its first resident choreographer (in 1971), has been artistic director/choreographer of the Sydney Dance Company since accepting the position in 1976, at the age of 26. With the assistance of co-artistic director Janet Vernon, Murphy has seen the company through nearly three decades of contemporary dance in Australia. His company provided opportunities to a large number of Australia's most talented choreographers, composers, and costume and design artists, including Stephen Page, artistic director of Bangarra Dance Theatre; Gideon Obarzanek, artistic director of Australia's Chunky Move; Paul Mercurio, actor (Strictly Ballroom) and founder of Australian Choreographic Ensemble; and Kim Walker, Artistic Director of The Flying Fruit Fly Circus. As Murphy edges towards his fiftieth birthday and the twenty-fifth anniversary of his directorship, the new millennium makes him the longest-standing artistic director/resident choreographer in Australia.
FRENCH MAYOR INVITES VSA DANCERS
Students from Virginia School of the Arts in Lynchberg will perform in January in Lynchberg's sister city of Rueil-Malmaison, France at the invitation of that city's mayor. VSA's 1999-2000 academic year students, who are selected for the school by audition, come from twenty-three states and Mexico, and will dance works by David Keener, Bud Kerwin, and artistic director Petrus Bosman.
Hotline prepared by Paula Durbin, Suki John, Janet Light, Marilyn Hunt, and Jennifer Leake
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|Date:||Jan 1, 2000|
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